Ex-Principal Admits to Hiring Hitman to Kill Teacher Pregnant With His Baby

City of St. Louis
City of St. Louis

A former Missouri middle school principal pleaded guilty on Thursday to hiring a hitman to murder a teacher who was seven months pregnant with his child, finally bringing the stunning case to a close.

Prosecutors alleged that married St. Louis principal Cornelius Green hired his friend to kill then-30-year-old Jocelyn Peters, a third-grade teacher at Mann Elementary School with whom he’d been having an affair.

In March 2016, Green briefly left St. Louis for Chicago to establish an alibi, prosecutors said. While he was away, his friend Phillip Cutler drove to Peters’ apartment and shot her in the head with a .380 caliber gun, killing her and her unborn child.

According to prosecutors, the hitman muffled the shot by “using a potato as a silencer.” He’d driven Green’s own car to Peters’ apartment that day.

Prosecutors also alleged that Green stole $2,500 from the school that he worked at to pay Cutler for the job. Once Cutler had murdered Peters, Green drove to her house and called 911, pretending not to know anything about her death.

He was hit with local charges over his role in the murder conspiracy seven months later. A federal grand jury indicted him on charges of murder for hire and conspiracy to commit murder for hire in 2022.

Federal prosecutors previously sought the death penalty against Green, a local outlet reported. He could still receive a life sentence, in which case the local charges against him would be dropped.

Green’s plea deal sentencing is set for March 5.

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